Kate and I are gearing up for the rest of the cyclocross season ahead, with two weekends of Texas racing and Nationals in Hartford left to go (Kate racing among the Elites as always, and me duking it out with the Single-Speeders for the rest of the season).

The last month of the season will also be a major balancing act, as we're both excited to announce that we will be opening a bike shop in February in Bloomfield, New Jersey.

You can see the abbreviated elevator pitch in the new section of our website, but I wanted to share a more lengthy, heartfelt explanation of some of our hopes and dreams here for the friends, family, and race buddies that want to take the time to hear about it. We've just completed the agreement for a really cute shop at 57 Washington Street, and Kate will be leaving her job as a corporate wellness manager to begin the renovation work later this month.

Between her degrees in Sports Science and Biomechanics, along with coaching and training for nearly a decade, Kate will be presiding over the beating heart of the shop. She will be leading classes that focus on the strength training, stretching, and on-the-bike workouts specific to the vastly different cyclists' needs.

The cycling-focused class is very different from a "spin bike workout," and involves attaching a rider's bike to one of our eight power-based trainers to simulate efforts on the same machine that will be used for events. This small-batch coaching studio allows her to focus on the client's form and offer tailored programs in ways that larger studios can't dream of doing. Her schedule allows her to accommodate both riders looking to try out a single class, and those clients looking for long term solutions to peak for events and productively use their power files throughout the seasons.

For as long as Kate's been in the health industry, I've been in the bike industry. I'll be focusing on the service end of our shop. I've been inspired by the dedicated racers who have opened up some seriously amazing service studios over the last four years. While it's amazing that we're a ten minute bike ride from our house to the shop, that's not the only reason we've picked downtown Bloomfield. The amount of growth there is pretty amazing, from new restaurants to new bike commuting options. In many ways, we see that the Bloomfield area is in need of a mechanic with a vast cycling background who knows exactly how important it is that everything works flawlessly.

We just want to open up the kind of place that so many bike enthusiasts dream about hanging out in. For every decision we have made and will make, we ask ourselves if the choice will help Jalapeño Cycling have a relaxed, fun atmosphere that is only serious about the results of our services.

A local cyclist told me that "It doesn't get easier, you just get faster" was the worst advice he ever received. He's spot on: when the legs feel right, when the bike beneath you feels perfect, when you know you've prepared yourself for a ride or an event as much as a balanced lifestyle will allow, cycling is both mentally and physically easier. This goes for all cyclists, whether they are local riders looking to make the climbs on a group rider easier, or elite athletes striving to gain form before the season.

Jalapeño Cycling is here to make the ride not only easier, but to add a little spice to it as well.